UK Music Futures Group members on their agenda for the industry - Part 1

UK Music Futures Group members on their agenda for the industry - Part 1

Since 2016, the UK Music Futures Group has been working tirelessly to shine a light on the experiences of young people in the music business. 

Chair Amanda Maxwell, alongside members Meenal Odedra, Frank Hamilton, Preye Crooks and more, feature in the latest edition of Music Week.

Here, in a UK Music Futures Group online extra, members including Cam Blackwood, Maddy Radcliff and Nick Breen discuss the collective’s vision for the industry…

Cam Blackwood, producer, mixer musician

“I’ve been a member of the UK Music Futures board for the past five years. In that time I’ve met so many brilliant and passionate people from all corners of the music industry ecosystem. 

“As a record producer and songwriter I generally hang out with artists, musicians and engineers (as well as the occasional record and publishing exec). But since being on the board, I’ve learned from music lawyers, live agents, talent managers, record and publishing label A&Rs, marketing executives, tour managers and independent artists. It’s really helped me appreciate the scale and scope of our incredible industry.

“I believe the UK Music Futures board is in a pretty unique position in our industry - in that we can have candid conversations and different points of view without worrying about the politics that seem to infect most of the conversations on, say, who gets what splits of the streaming revenue pie

“In the time I’ve been involved we have presented the UK Music main board with recommendations on mental health, mentoring, intersectionality, to name a few, as well as trying to put pressure on the different stakeholders to work together on more issues.

“I would love to look back in 20 years’ time and say that we helped shape the music industry into a more proactive, outward looking, inclusive, positive and fair place - and that we helped bridge that, seemingly, vast divide between creativity and commerce." 

Maddy Radcliff, campaigns & social media official, Musicians’ Union

How would you describe the Group’s aims and what do you think its successes have been?

“UK Music Futures is more important than it’s ever been. The group brings together and amplifies the experiences of artists, A&Rs, producers, festival organisers, musicians and others working in the industry now, and has a clear route to getting these experiences in front of decision makers.

“It’s really important that the UK Music board - and government ministers, MPs, and all those in positions of power in or over the music industry - know what the reality of working in our industry is like at grassroots level and for emerging artists, and how their decisions affect people’s real work and lives.”

What is the larger message to the music industry you would like to share and encourage? 

“Coming from a trade union background, my message is simple: listen to and respect people working in the industry. And for those working in the industry, it’s to get involved in groups like UK Music Futures, and support campaigns like those Futures members are working on to make the industry fairer and stronger. Not just for you now, but for everyone around you and everyone who’ll be coming next.”

Nick Breen, partner, Reed Smith 

How would you describe the Group’s aims and what do you think its successes have been?

“The Futures Group brings together voices from the various parts of the industry and promotes collaboration and transparency. Its members have unique experiences of the music industry across its various divisions, from recording (major and indie), publishing, live, D2C, artist, producer, writer, through to legal and management. The group has been successful in fostering an open forum that encourages candid and open conversations about challenges facing the industry, and exploring ways of working together to improve the industry’s attitudes and approaches to well-being, sustainability, outreach, support and mentoring.  

What is the larger message to the music industry you would like to share or encourage? 

“While at times the music industry can feel disjointed and divided, it has been encouraging being part of the Futures Group to hear the numerous parallels and shared vision across the various divisions. I’d love to encourage more communication between those in the industry.”

Subscribers can click here for our magazine feature on the UK Music Futures Group.


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